Got Junk? How to Prepare and Price for Your Yard Sale

price-for-your-yard-saleIt’s that time of year again where most go through their belongings and pack them up to store in the garage, attic, or basement. Old clothes, old toys, knick-knacks that no longer match the interior or just don’t seem appealing anymore, they’re all boxed up and forgotten. Instead of adding to the clutter, why not make some extra money from your unwanted items by having a garage/yard sale instead? However, don’t be in too much of a hurry to throw one together after only a few days of planning.

Garage sales are a pretty big deal and can be overwhelming. You want to spend a few weeks planning and are prepared.

Here are some ways to prepare for your garage sale.

  1. Make sure that you won’t sell anything you’ll regret later. If you aren’t sure.. don’t sell it.
  2. Make sure that electronics actually work, and that any toys that require batteries work as well.
  3. If you own any heirlooms, antiques, or collectibles, do not sell them at your garage/yard sale unless you know exactly how much they’re worth. There are people whose jobs it is to frequent yard sales in search of people who have no idea what they’re selling, buy the underpriced valuables and then resell them for a hefty profit later.

How do I price this junk treasure? Obviously, you can’t sell a used item for store price. While you’re not exactly giving things away, you still want to make sure your items sell without pricing them too high.

  1. Remember that the average buyer at a garage sale isn’t going to be waltzing around with thousands of dollars to throw around. A good price range for items should be $1.00-$100.00, with maybe one or two higher-priced items, if you have anything that would be worth that much.
  2. While pricing, keep in mind its condition, and whether or not it’s a popular item. Generally, 10% to 25% of the original store price is a good start. However, if the item is fairly new and has hardly (or ever) seen use, and you still have the original box with instructions, you could push for 30%-40% of the original price. If you are selling off old board games, for example games your children have outgrown, if you kept them in excellent condition, you can generally sell them in the 30% – 40% range of the original price.
  3. Many buyers may not be willing to pay too much for clothes they can’t try on. While it might be tempting to price brand clothes for $20.00 or more, it’s best not to price clothes for more than $5.00 – $10.00 for clothes that are in good condition. Buyers will be more willing to gamble on cheaper-priced clothes.
  4. If you want to cut down on coins, just group lower priced items together, especially for things you want to get rid of. Example: If you’re planning on selling paperback books for $.25 each, price them as 4 for $1.00 instead.
  5. If you can, compare your intended prices to the prices of local pawnshops, Salvation Army, and Goodwill. Be sure to check out E-bay as well. Cut your prices if you have to in order to meet or beat those prices.

And don’t forget… never, ever sell anything without the owner’s permission, such as an older kid’s toys.

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